Earlier this week Instagram rolled out their newest feature: Instagram Stories. This component on the photo sharing app allows users to post photos and videos to a “storyline” that will disappear after 24 hours. Users can add text or illustrations to their posts, and all storylines for accounts a user follows appear at the top of the app upon opening.
If you’re familiar with Snapchat, this concept sounds very familiar. It’s basically the exact same premise as Snap stories. This has posed the question: is Instagram trying to be Snapchat? Is this going to affect the Snapchat user base?
While it still may be too early to tell what the long-term effects on the two apps will be, the short answer is both yes and no. While Instagram Stories is not on the same level as Snapchat in terms of direct message image sharing that disappears, the storyline concept does provide a huge benefit to brands and bloggers that may be a game changer.
Many brands and bloggers have a strong Instagram following, and developing a new audience on a separate app, like Snapchat, is difficult. The different format also requires it’s own content strategy. Ultimately, building an audience from scratch and developing a unique strategy is a lot of work that many brands and bloggers simply don’t have the time to do. Enter Instagram Stories. This new method of engaging an already established fan base allows brands and bloggers to deploy a real-time engagement strategy without needing to expand to an entirely separate platform.
Many beauty brands have already been capitalizing on the new feature and have been seeing great exposure. Read here: https://www.glossy.co/instagram-effect/beauty-brands-jump-on-instagram-stories?utm_source=digiday.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=digidaydis&utm_content=dua-beauty-brands-jump-on-instagram-stories. Combine the storyline concept with the new Instagram Business analytics recently made available and brands and bloggers can truly see engagement results.
The final scoop? If you’re a brand or blogger who hasn’t yet expanded to Snapchat, utilize Instagram Stories and stop thinking about developing a plan for the Snapchat platform. Reach you audience where it already is, but in a new and innovative way. Go behind the scenes; show a day-in-the-life; give product demonstrations. Overall—Show your personality and use Instagram Stories to humanize your brand and develop deeper relationships with your customer base.
If you need help developing an engaging social media content strategy, we’d love to help! Contact J2 Marketing via [email protected].